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You can live with lupus

With proper treatment, the patient lives as long as one who has no inflammatory and autoimmune disease that affects all organs

Systemic lupus erythematosus is an inflammatory and autoimmune disease that affects all organs. When diagnosed on time, it is possible to stop its progress with good prognosis for patients.

Statistics show that it is 0.06 percent of the population in Yucatan, or between 2,500 and 3,000 people.

Dr. Jacinto Herrera León, rheumatology specialist and director of Regional General Hospital No. 1 „Lic. Ignacio García Téllez ”of IMSS explains that, contrary to what some may believe, there is no increase in new cases of lupus in the entity, although the number of patients suffering from the disease that the institution is serving has increased.

He explains that this is due to the fact that there has been a significant increase in users as a result of the migration of neighbors from other countries.

He states yes Yucatan It ranks first in the world in the case of rheumatoid arthritis since 2011, with an incidence of 2.8% of the population, more than double the national and world average, or 1.3%. However, lupus – a rheumatic disease – remains at 0.06%.

Dr. Herrera León indicates that the condition affects people of productive age, that is, between 20 and 40 years of age and mostly women in the ratio of 9 to 1 of men.

Considering that 40% of women are heads of households, one can understand why the disease has an economic impact on the home.

The professional adds that lupus erythematosus affects the skin, brain, kidneys, liver, eyes, lungs, heart, blood vessels and intestines, so timely diagnosis is needed to stop and avoid damage that risks a person's life.

It is an autoimmune disease, which means that the body's cells in the body are mistakenly attacked.

30% of lupus patients have renal involvement, which obscures the prognosis of life.

It is known that in the onset of evil, there is a genetic component, which remains "dormant" until it is "awakened" by some factor in the environment.

Many times it is triggered by exposure to ultraviolet rays. Thus it can infect either a viral disease or the consumption of certain medicines.

The sign of lupus is the redness of the face "in butterfly wings", that is, in a pattern that does not cover the whole face.

Also, oral ulcers (spots), involvement of the small and medium joints, anemia and a decrease in the number of red blood cells are symptoms that can alert to the disease.

The diagnosis is clinical and confirmed by a blood test, biopsies – if the doctor thinks so – and magnetic resonance imaging, among others.


Dr Herrera León points out that current treatments allow the patient to survive for 10 years in as many as 95% of cases, which does not mean that they will be killed after that time, because if they continue to heal and take care of their health, they can survive for as many years as anyone else without difficulty .

The most important thing is to stop the disease from progressing before it reaches a difficult stage.

The doctor assures that they have all the necessary medications at IMSS to attend systemic lupus erythematosus and that patients only receive them. It is imperative that they, if they are the correct recipients, go for counseling for diagnosis and therapy. – Iris Ceballos Alvarado

Anyone can suffer from an autoimmune disease

In diseases such as lupus, psoriasis and hypothyroidism, the immune system itself attacks the body because of a mistake that leads it to the conclusion that foreign agents are present and must be eliminated.

It is estimated that 20% of the world’s population suffers from some type of autoimmune disease, so although these conditions alone do not reach very high numbers, together they add a significant number.

Experts on the subject explain to the journal that human beings have a very aggressive immune system, such as is needed to protect the body from threats from numerous bacteria and viruses. Usually when a system detects something strange in the body, it responds by repelling it without affecting its own cells and organs.

This mode of action changes when there is an autoimmune disease, as the system ceases to recognize what is part of the same organism and responds by attacking it.

Genetic factors, as well as environmental and cultural factors (lifestyle, diet, etc.) predominate for the occurrence of immune defects.

When this happens, infections, cancer, over-reactions (allergies) and autoimmune diseases occur.

Hypothyroidism, psoriasis, lupus, rheumatoid arthritis and vitiligo are some of the autoimmune diseases best known to the population, but their total numbers are hundreds.

Lupus is rare in Yucatan, as well as in Mexico and in the world, according to experts.

One of the reference centers for lupus treatment in the country is the National Institute of Medical Sciences and Nutrition "Salvador Zubirán" in Mexico City, which treats about two thousand cases, a lower figure considering the large number of patients in the Republic.


The idea that there has been an increase in the number of lupus in the country and the country is explained by experts only as a perception, the result of more doctors, health care facilities, coverage and spread of the disease, which also led to more diagnoses, without it really increasing the incidence.

They add that any person can be affected by an autoimmune condition, the only way to combat this and other diseases is to be aware that 80% of a person's well-being depends on themselves.

In the hands of each individual there is the possibility of eating a balanced diet, exercising, resting long enough, avoiding excess and worrying about emotional health, five recommendations to follow to ensure good health.

It was created in 2018 and brings together half a thousand people

About 500 people are part of the Yucatan Lupus and Rheumatic Diseases Association, which seeks to refer, inform and connect those who have this condition so they know they are not alone.

The group was formed in November last year and is made up of patients with various rheumatic diseases like lupus located in Yucatán, Campeche and Quintana Roo.

Andrea Pérez Herrera, president of the association, indicates that 60 to 70 percent of members suffer from lupus and the rest from other rheumatic diseases.

He explains that one of his main goals is to support people in the care of their illness, which is why they have contracts with medical specialists in various fields, who offer them cheap consultations.

Rheumatologists, nephrologists, psychologists, pediatricians and therapists are some of the professionals who can be accessed through an association that also has an agreement with two laboratories, because carrying out studies on these diseases is burdensome.

In the same way, they receive discounted services from an ophthalmic company, because such conditions can affect vision, either because it acts directly on the eyes or as a result of intake of drugs with a heavy cortisone load.

The group holds meetings every month, at which it invites an expert to hold an interview. When that is not possible, they gather to celebrate the birthdays of the month, live together, answer questions and support each other.

And that is, says Andrea Pérez, many times family and friends do not understand the physical pain that patients are experiencing, so conversations with other people who are going through are also better understood.

Andrea Pérez points out that medicines for diseases like lupus are expensive and not all members of the social security service.

She points out that hospitals like the Yucatan Peninsula Regional High Specialty Hospital do not have lupus medication in their catalog. This motivated them to refer last May, with the support of Deputy Manuel Díaz Suárez, an initiative of the Union Congress to include treatment of the disease in popular insurance.

He added that two other associations in the country have sent similar initiatives.

Andrea shares that she was 18 when she was diagnosed with lupus. The doctors advised him not to become pregnant, as this would bring him many problems; However, he emphasizes that patients with good disease management can lead a normal life, as was the case with her, who is already a mother of two. – Iris Ceballos Alvarado


To learn more about the Yucatan Lupus and Rheumatic Diseases Association, you can check out their social networks and website and call 9994-20-33-27.


The medicines for these diseases are prescribed according to the characteristics of each patient, who, when manifested by improvement, eats smaller doses or, if he does not notice the expected effects, changes it.


It is in these cases that partners donate them for the benefit of other members, who receive them whenever a substance appears in their prescription.

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